Hundreds of FBI employees investigated for sexual misconduct quit before being disciplined: report

One memo showed that more than 660 FBI employees retired or resigned after being investigated for sexual misconduct but before receiving a final disciplinary letter.

Published: October 6, 2022 1:29pm

Updated: October 6, 2022 2:25pm

Sen. Chuck Grassley, the top Republican on the Senate Judiciary Committee, sent a letter Thursday to Attorney General Merrick Garland after whistleblowers saying hundreds of FBI employees who were investigated for sexual misconduct quit before being disciplined. 

The whistleblowers provided Grassley with an internal Justice Department memo, titled "Retirements and Resignations During Unwelcome Sexual Conduct Adjudications."

The document showed that from 2004 to 2020, over 660 FBI employees, including 45 top-level officials, retired or resigned after an internal probe into alleged misconduct but before receiving a final disciplinary letter. 

The data does not include FBI employees who resigned or retired before an investigation was opened, so the most accurate number may be higher.

Grassley also said he received another department document, titled "Inconsistent Adjudication of Non-Consensual Sexual Misconduct." The document showed that higher-ranked FBI employees are "more likely to have their sexual misconduct case adjudicated" and are "subjected to lesser penalties" than lower-ranked employees.

"Simply put, these two documents show a systemic failure within the Justice Department and FBI to protect female employees from sexual harassment and sexual misconduct in the workplace and a failure to sufficiently punish employees for that same misconduct," Grassley wrote in the letter that was also addressed to FBI Director Christopher Wray.

The Iowa senator also asked for more data from the Justice Department so that he could better understand what changes, if any, have been made to address the issues in the FBI.

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